I enjoy lots of
today's music, but I remember yesterday's music, too. I'm planning on
posting a track here most days, if not exactly daily, for a while.
We'll see how long this lasts.
What I will avoid are the tracks heard regularly on classic rock and oldies radio. I'll tend toward more or less obscure artists, occasionally throwing in less known tracks by well known artists or maybe sometimes live versions of well-known songs.
Carla Thomas was the first star Stax-Volt Records ever had. In 1960, before the company's name changed from Satellite to Stax Records, she and her father, Rufus Thomas, made a recording of "Cause I Love You" that became a regional hit. Early in 1961 they recorded "Gee Whiz (Look At His Eyes)," which would become her biggest hit and her trademark song. Coincidentally, several years earlier Rufus had the first hit for Sun Records, although that turned into catastrophe for Sam Phillips.
This recording of "Got My Mojo Workin' " comes from the album The Stax / Volt Revue Volume 2 Live In Paris. This was the same tour that produced a total of five albums. Samples of another volume in the series, Stax/Volt Live In Europe #3: London To Paris, can be heard here. The tour was also the subject of a 2009 PBS program, "Sweet Soul Music: Stax Live in Europe 1967," although Thomas, the only woman in the show, was not included in the program.
This song has been the subject of copyright litigation. The version Thomas sings here is clearly closer to that of Preston Foster's and Muddy Waters than it is to the version by Ruth Stratchborneo, but it is different from both. This lends support to the idea that it is nearly like folk music, so much part of the culture that no one owns the idea.
I chose this track by Thomas in part because Steve Cropper's part in it is really smoking.